Figurale Bronzen ägyptischer und griechisch-römischer Art vom Jabal al-‘Awd, Jemen (von Robert Fleischer und Regine Schulz)· Die Felsmalereien von Djarf al-Yahudi im zentraljemenitischen Hochland. Neuere Informationen zur Palastarchitektur im vorislamischen Arabien (von Mohammed Ali Al-Salami)
Robert Fleischer - Regine Schulz: Figurale Bronzen ägyptischer und griechisch-römischer Art vom Jabal al-‘Awd, Jemen
In 1996 a local farmer discovered a large number of ancient bronzes below the summit of the mountain Jabal al-‘Awd in Yemen at a height of nearly 3000 m. Only a few of these objects are known today. Other ancient objects had been illegally excavated in this area before, and the new find initiated official excavations, executed by the German Archaeological Institute, department Sana’a.
On the mountain was a fortified town with gates, a temple, cobbled streets and houses built of volcanic stone. This town was used in the first three centuries of the Common Era, and was probably destroyed by invading Ethiopians. The bronzes came from a large building, an impressive construction built with imported limestone blocks. The building had several floors, which had collapsed and the bronzes were presumably thrown down from the upper floors. It is possible that they were stored in a hidden place in times of conflict, or they were part of the booty of war of the city dwellers.
The variety of objects is diverse and includes numerous South Arabian pieces. Those of local tradition are not part of this work and will be published separately by a different author. The material presented here includes bronzes imported from Egypt, Italy and possibly other areas of the Mediterranean. Also included are locally produced examples influenced by Mediterranean models, identified as South Arabian based on technical characteristics.
Two very similar female statuettes were part of a larger series, but they are different in size and therefore cast in different moulds. This raises the question where these bronzes were made, and if perhaps a craftsman was the producer traveling with his moulds. Two bronzes, the Egyptian Sphinx and the bust of Athena have South Arabian inscriptions, which identify them as votive offerings. These inscriptions have nothing to do with their original purpose, nor with the place of their discovery. Most unusual is the facemask of a Roman cavalry helmet, the only specimen of this kind found outside the borders of the Roman Empire.
The bronzes from the Jabal al-‘Awd are the largest and most important discovery of its kind on the Arabian Peninsula. It is unfortunate that only a few have been preserved and are available for research. Since the turn of the era these objects either reached Yemen by trade or they were manufactured in South Arabia. The trade route from Egypt through the Red Sea to India became intensified under the reign of Augustus, and South Arabia and the Mediterranean were brought closer together as never before.
Mohammed Ali al-Salami: Die Felsmalereien von Djarf al-Yahudi im zentraljemenitischen Hochland. Neue Informationen zur Palastarchitektur im vorislamischen Arabien
The article concerns paintings of architecture found on a rock projection in Djarf al-Yahudi in Khawlan at-Tiyal, located ca. 50 km east of Sana’a. The representation of a large complex of buildings was made in Middle Sabaean times (1st century BC - 3rd century AD); it is shown together with other, contextually unrelated motifs, graffiti of animals and persons as well as short inscriptions. The paintings are mainly in dark red, black and white colours.
The architectural representation can be divided into three juxtaposed sections, each depicting different structures. These are multi-storied buildings that picture fortified or palatial complexes. Such monumental edifices are known from pre-Islamic inscriptions, but also from descriptions in later Islamic times (for example, by al-Hamdani, 10th century AD); however, until now they have not been clearly attested in archaeological contexts. The exceedingly detailed illustrations are not limited to just the buildings themselves, but also pertain to the furnishings such as statuary, plants and other decorative elements. This enables the comparison of the rock paintings at Djar